A comfortable flight is the first step to having a positive trip. On a 14-hour direct flight, I didn’t bother spending an extra $10 on a travel pillow and slept for the entire trip. For the next week, all my pictures were taken with a head tilt. To Facebook friends it was a new pose I was overdoing, to myself, it was an incredibly painful experience.
To help you avoid situations like this, we’re sharing some advice so you never wake up with your cheek glued to your shoulder.
1. Wear comfy clothes
If you don’t see yourself sleeping in them, they’re probably not comfortable. If tight clothes seem fine at the moment, they might feel different in 10 hours. Sidenote: take an extra sweatshirt in case it gets cold and there are no blankets.
2. Book a seat beforehand
It honestly doesn’t take long. A comfortable flight can be an aisle seat if you pee a lot or window if you like a leaning wall. You can’t get both, unfortunately, so pick wisely.
3. Charge your tablet, laptop, phone, iWatch, e-reader, camera batteries, blue tooth earphones, light up pen, etc.
Okay, you may not have or travel with all of this but yours truly likes to be prepared. There is most often just one USB port in a seat and sometimes even that doesn’t work. It’s better to do all of this at home or in the waiting room, in case.
4. Don’t carry too much
Pack smart, at least in your carry on. I like to keep a small bag with me that has my passport, documents, and phone so I can throw everything else with the bigger bag in the plane compartment.
5. Travel Pillow
A key to a comfortable flight is the travel pillow. That’s it, just get one.
6. Water bottle
Packing an empty bottle will allow you to get past security and then you can fill it up while waiting for your flight. Many times, especially on longer flights, the take off gets delayed or people take way too long to get settled in. Hence, it’s always smart to have your own water supply to stay hydrated.
During the flight
1. Pack mints
Long periods of quiet time and sleep can cause bad breath. Having some mints to munch on is a great idea if there is a big line up by the washroom or to offer to your neighbor who insists on a conversation.
2. Pack gum
There is not a body part that hates flying more than the ears. Chewing gum can help you combat the take-off and landing ear pressure. You’ll thank me one day, I promise.
3. Wet wipes
Wet wipes do more than just make-up removal. There are some airlines, particularly the ones for short and domestic trips, that don’t really bother to clean up the aircraft upon the following flight. It’s great to just wipe down the surface of the seat rests, remote, and food table before use to eliminate the presence of fecal coliforms such as E. coli.
4. Never say no to water
This more of a don’t do instead of a do but you get the point. Cabin air is notoriously dry. Therefore, exhaling alone dehydrates the body. Now, imagine what breathing in such high altitudes can do. So, when the flight attendant asks if you need anything, get yourself a refill.
Sleeping is probably the only thing that can make time disappear, making it the most productive thing you can do on long flights. However, not all us are that blessed by the sleeping Gods. If you are, take advantage of it. Remember, don’t sleep if it’s daytime in your destination and you have places to be ASAP.
1. Use the washroom
A comfortable flight is impossible without a comfortable bladder. No one likes the pathetic wormhole excuse for a restroom but they are there for a reason. Take advantage of them. I’ve made the mistake of holding it in until getting to the airport but it wasn’t my brightest idea considering we were all the way at the back of the plane. They took forever to open the doors, and when we finally got in, we hit immigration line-ups.
2. Go for a walk
It’s difficult to stand up after the long sitting session. All the blood rushes to your knees and you get the fuzzy feels on your toes. It’s probably a good idea to squeeze in a walk or stretch out your legs before landing so the shock to your body is not extreme.
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